Unwinding Hours: Album Preview Party – live review

Unwinding Hours
Stereo, Glasgow
1st Sept 2012

The Unwinding Hours played much of their new albumn, Afterlives at a packed Stereo in Glasgow on Saturday night. LTW’s Vivienne Wilson was there to enjoy the aural feast.

It does not surprise me that the Unwinding Hours play a disproportionate number of their gigs in their home city of Glasgow. I imagine that as soon as one gig is over, their friends and fans are harassing them about when the next gig will be on. However, outside Glasgow they seem to play in Germany, but not often in other British cities and this puzzles me, because I think a lot of people would like to see them play live.

After setting up their own equipment, they took to the stage at Stereo and entranced everyone in the room with Break, a joyous cacophony of beautifully sculpted noise. Have a listen for yourselves:

The next songs, I’ve Loved and The Right were equally powerful, dark and brooding. Then, just as we thought we were getting a masterclass in guitar driven moody rock married with haunting melodies, they did a song which was all about the rhythm section.

They were joined on stage by the wonderful Karine Polwart for the Promised Land after Craig B had explained that they had wanted a particular singer to collaborate with them, but had not had the guts to ask. My view is that Karine Polwart is an inspired choice. For anyone not familiar with her songs, this is what she sounds like:

Following this, they played some old songs including the wonderfully gut wrenching Say My Name (gets me every time, I’m afraid) and Tightrope, which sounded beefed up from the old version to me.

During what might laughingly be called the encore – there’s nowhere to hide in Stereo, Craig played Dogs and Solstice alone, using fancy recording guitar pedals to provide his own instant backing track. These songs are beautiful and it is a true pleasure and privilege to have them played right in front of you.

The rest of the band came back on for an energetic and masterful rendition of Knut, leaving the hot and sweaty audience with smiles on their faces.

A London gig is scheduled on 14th September at the Sebright Arms and more information is available here. They are also touring Germany this month.

Please play in Glasgow again soon.


All words by Vivienne Wilson. More by Vivienne can be read here.

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